On Oct. 6, a federal judge temporarily blocked Texas’ controversial 6-week abortion ban that went into effect back in September.
According to PEOPLE, U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman granted a preliminary injunction to suspend the stringent ban, also referred to as the Senate Bill 8, after the Justice Department argued that it was created “to prevent women from exercising their constitutional rights.”
The temporary ban will prohibit the state from enforcing the law in any capacity. Individuals who have lawsuits brought against them because of their need for an abortion will also be dismissed.
As MADAMENOIRE previously reported, on Sept.1, Senate Bill 8 went into full effect after the Supreme court and federal appeals failed to come to an agreement on emergency requests presented by abortion providers.
The strict policy gave private citizens the right to sue anyone who assisted a pregnant individual seeking to have an abortion within the outlawed timeframe, including the abortion facility and even healthcare officials. Many abortion-rights groups argued that the strict bill would lead to a catastrophic wave of abortion clinic closures forcing many Texans to flee out of state for treatment.
Judge Pitman wrote in his opinion that the move was “flagrantly unconstitutional.”
“A person’s right under the Constitution to choose to obtain an abortion prior to fetal viability is well established. With full knowledge that depriving its citizens of this right by direct state action would be flagrantly unconstitutional, the State contrived an unprecedented and transparent statutory scheme whereby it created a private cause of action in which private citizens with no personal interest in or connection to a person seeking an abortion would be able to interfere with that right using the state’s judicial system, judges, and court officials.”
“From the moment S.B. 8 went into effect, women have been unlawfully prevented from exercising control over their own lives in ways that are protected by the Constitution. This court will not sanction one more day of this offensive deprivation of such an important right.”
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said in a statement on Oct. 6, that the ruling “is an important step forward toward restoring the constitutional rights of women across the state of Texas.”
“S.B. 8 not only blatantly violates the right to safe and legal abortion established under Roe v. Wade, but it creates a scheme to allow private citizens to interfere with that right and to evade judicial review,” she explained. “The fight has only just begun, both in Texas and in many states across this country where women’s rights are currently under attack. That’s why the President supports codifying Roe v. Wade, why he has directed a whole-of-government response to S.B. 8, and why he will continue to stand side-by-side with women across the country to protect their constitutional rights.”
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